Shoe story

Jessie jots...

Little did I know that I was suppose to sit down with the President of SCSU on the same table for dinner on Sunday. I attended the NAACP dinner to celebrate the Dr. Martin Luther King's Day on Jan 20, representing the Women's Center. I was so nervous no doubt. I was so afraid that when I sat down to eat, I'll make the chicken bone fly across the room and hit the President's head... but oh thank goodness, I got some informal training from good ol Dad how dinner etiquette should be. It was an extravagant dinner, guests came from across the US and I felt really honored to be there.

And so, I was chatting with this one girl and she complimented on my pair of heels. To keep the ball rolling, I told her that I got it for my wedding and she was surprised to know that I was married. "You are married?"

I am surprise that she was surprised. This is the not the first time I got that question and I begin to think, what is it that gives this reaction? Maybe it is unbelievable to some people when I just got my fringe chopped, hence looking younger and being an art student doesn't make me look anything like a housewife. Some even assumed that my husband is a 30 something year old dude who just wanted to wed a younger wife. And some thought, I was joking.

Back to the story. Though in some ways, I'm kind of glad that my heels became an indicator of my status being a Mrs. I don't wear my ring a lot these days (or at all), considering the time I have to spend on using charcoal, paints, clay and the occasional primitive way of eating with hand. And since it takes a lot of effort (see post on Not Fun) to get it polished in Mall of America, I rather keep the ring in a safe place and retain its sparkles. Which is why some classmates and friends don't even know I'm married until I said so.

Just a random thought. Strangely, when most people here own a pair of heels for the wedding... I own four pairs. One number is a metallic pointed-pump for my photoshoot. Second one is a red heel for the traditional morning ritual. Third is an all-white heel to go with my white flowy, wedding gown. Finally, fourth is a sparkly champagne colored pointed-heel to go with my orangey dinner gown.

And they all cost less than RM50 (about 13 dollars) each! That kind of explained why I shopped like a mad woman in Penang, right? To find that very versatile pair of shoes took many attempts, driving up and down each shopping mall available in Penang was no fun. But I'm glad I insisted on doing so. I wanted to be able to wear them post-wedding so that I don't just buy it for the wedding but I can wear it to some occasion, any occasion. And in some cases, helps me with conversation.

In honor of how precious the shoes are to me, I did a reproduction on one of them - the red heels by the brand, Nose. It was done with black, white and 3 shades of gray in gouache paint. It's a small painting, only 6x9 but it took me 12 hours to complete it. The details were small, and there's a lot of planning ahead in this piece, which took up most of the time. It's difficult to combine the limited colors allowed, in order to create depth but it was a challenge fun to overcome. The limited color palette was no easy task when you also need to show the shoe texture and form. I didn't do a good job creating the exact shading since the picture itself was blurry. But overall, I think it shows the impression of depth in a two-dimensional form.

Ironically, I think my shoes have better way of telling people that I'm a married woman ... and not the ring!


ooi said...

The painting, awesome! The value of those heels and what they meant to you, it shows in the composition and depth of the painting :)

Jessie said...

Thanks Ooi! Glad you like it.

M.KATE said...

jessie,i love the shoes,actually looking for a patented black pair. the very nice ones cost a bomb and i know i'll hardly wear it, just liked the feel to being IN IT, prancing and walking around feeling tall and nice. and the medium range or cheaper ones will kill me if i had them for more than one hour!

Jessie C said...

m.kate - I, too, have the exact dilemma about buying a really good pair of heels for my wedding last year but decided not to because I will only wear it to what - nothing. When I tried on nose shoes, they are too good to pass. It is easy on the feet, and it doesn't cost a bomb. Why not give a try? :) My only regret now is that I can't get anymore nose shoes as we don't have it here.

Jessie C said...
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